Only a moment underground,
feet on rubble, phone torch illuminating
chamber—broken glass, Sex Pistols graffito,
swastika—is long enough
before I grasp rusty ladder,
scrabble up to a welcome
from May sunshine,
fat lambs and orange gorse.
For instructions on how to submit your own poems, click here
All poems from our Poetry Map of Scotland are subject to copyright and should not be reproduced otherwise without the poet's permission.
We’ll have two Open Mic events next month plus our usual slam. The first Open Mic session will be in a break-out room at the opening night party, after the formal launch event on Saturday 6 March, starting at 8pm. Then on Friday 12 March at 9pm, our regular Risk a Verse Open Mic is in partnership with St Mungo’s Mirrorball. We look forward to hearing some of the Mirrorballers reading then, but there are plenty more open slots for anyone else who would like to read then. To sign up for a reading slot, just email email@example.com with either Opening Night Open Mic, or Friday Risk a Verse Open Mic in the subject line with your name and email address. And whether you want to read or just enjoy hearing the poems and chat, you can book a free ticket with the Zoom link at our online Box Office.
The StAnza Slam will be on Saturday at 9pm, and even though it will start a bit earlier than usual this year, as we’ll all be joining from home, we decided to take the chance to give it a sleepover theme. So, feel free to dress in a onesie or dressing gown, and to have a mug of cocoa if you like.
If you’d like to take part in the Slam, there are still some places left so email firstname.lastname@example.org with Slam in the subject line, and with your name, email address, and phone number. And again, whether you’d like to take part or just to be in the audience, you can book a ticket to get the Zoom link from our online Box Office.
And full information about the Festival Café on Zoom opening hours is available on our website at https://stanzapoetry.org/festival/events/festival-cafe-zoom.
Will Harris’ debut collection explores a range of issues many of which circle around belonging and ancestry, of finding a voice to bridge the faultlines of cultural and personal identity (Harris has Chinese-Indonesian-British ancestry). It opens with rootlessness but Harris’ distinctive response is to pose the challenge of such fractures as one of poetics. Reassemblage, pursued initially through Derek Walcott’s broken pottery metaphor is posed as a question, not an answer: ‘That can’t be taken; granted’ (‘State-Building’), the semi-colon positioned between words holds different reading possibilities.... The collection as a whole shuttles between real and imagined states, between locations (Indonesia, Turkey, Illionois, London among others), and betwixt high and popular in a way that disrupts conventionalised hierarchies; in traversing ruptures, Harris shows a striking ability to ‘complex stitch’ tableaux, situations, textual fragments and allusions seamlessly....
This is an excerpt of a review on the DURA website by Gail Low of Will Harris' Rendang. For more information on Harris at StAnza21, please click HERE. To read the whole review, go to the DURA webpage.
Ruth Aylett’s first solo pamphlet exemplifies just what thematic poetry collections make possible. Pretty in Pink examines facets of girl and womanhood, and the pressures to conform to, internalise and perform ideals of femininity, through different lenses of time, geography, class and culture. The collection itself provides a container for twenty-nine poems, fragments of lives and experiences, which resonate with one another, evoking the entrenched nature of patriarchal oppression but also offering glimpses of resistance and hope for the future. Highly political as well as personal then, these poems are also deftly lyrical and imaginative....
This is an excerpt of a review on the DURA website by Lindsay Macgregor of Ruth Aylett's Pretty in Pink. For more information on Aylett at StAnza21, please click HERE. To read the whole review, go to the DURA webpage.
If you want to discover what lies behind the mysterious title of Colette Bryce’s eighth collection, it is unlikely that the cover will tell you. Nor will the opening poems, which lead up to the book’s searing long poem heartland. However, when you reach that section you will want to retrace to collect the clues, which were not always obvious, but invariably were present. That seems entirely true to the pattern of how we react, how we grieve and how we try to unpick reasons when we attempt to comprehend the sudden death of someone close. The loss of the never-named ‘M’ is on every page.Whilst there is no dedication, a dedication is embedded nonetheless....
This is an excerpt of a review on the DURA website by Beth McDonough of Colette Bryce's The M Pages. For more information on Bryce at StAnza21, please click HERE. To read the whole review, go to the DURA webpage.
Poet, and significantly translator, Sasha Dugdale’s fourth collection, Deformations, takes two important, and apparently diverse series, which are linked and book-ended by less overtly connected poems. Reading as the poet has ordered makes an intriguing journey, but some of the real bonding is to be found in the overlapping of the poems traversing the two major sections. They suggest a great deal of how Dugdale has not only uncovered aspects of the central characters but also the nature of attempting to shed their influences. In ‘Eternal Feminine’, she says of the Downs (and much more) ‘Their backs wear thin like wedding velvet/worn at a funeral[.].’ Deformations’ cover describes the ‘preoccupation with biographical and mythical narrative’ and ‘how trauma is disguised and deformed through myth and art.’
This is an excerpt of a review on the DURA website by Beth McDonough of Sasha Dugdale's TS Eliot Prize shortlisted Deformations. For more information on Dugdale at StAnza21, please click HERE. To read the whole review, go to the DURA webpage.